Poetical Scavenger is an ongoing digital humanities project conceived in the scavenging spirit of poetry miscellanies published in eighteenth-century Britain. Our goal is to find interesting poems from this period not typically included in modern teaching anthologies and make them available to a wider readership, including other students and teachers of eighteenth-century British poetry.
The full miscellany can be accessed in two ways. Clicking on “Table of Contents” in the menu bar above takes users to a static page that organizes all the authors and poems currently included in the miscellany in alphabetical order. Clicking on any individual poem title from this page takes users directly to that poem’s unique page. Alternatively, users can peruse the miscellany as a series of blogroll posts by clicking on “The Poems” in the menu above. The most recent posts are also listed on the side bar. Each poem can be downloaded as a PDF file for classroom or any other use, but the link that allows this function only appears on that poem’s dedicated page, not on the post. (N.B.: The plug-in software that makes these PDFs does not maintain the line indentation formatting found in the digital versions of the poems, and the inserted line numbers are not right justified.) Short biographies of some of the named poets so far included on this site are organized alphabetically in descending order from the drop-down menu under “Poet Biographies.” These biographies can also be downloaded as PDF files.
Each poem in the miscellany is also tagged by its editor based on the following categories: author, poetic genre, verse form, and main topic(s) or theme(s). The tag cloud located on the side bar offers users a way to retrieve all poems by a specific author; all poems identified under a specific generic category (e.g. sonnet, verse epistle); all poems written in a specific verse form or meter (e.g. heroic couplets, common meter stanzas, blank verse); and all poems that represent a particular topic or theme (e.g. nature, music, animal rights).
The poems in this digital miscellany are transcribed, edited, and annotated by students at San Francisco State University under the supervision of Professor Bill Christmas. We would all like to acknowledge the wonderful support provided by the staff of the Special Collections and Archives Room at the J. Paul Leonard Library on campus.
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